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Additional resources for Bret Easton Ellis's American Psycho: a reader's guide
In confirmation of this, we might consider the descriptions of Owen's furniture in either chapter (Ellis has advised his readers to pay close attention to 'the language, the structure, the details'). In "Girls", Patrick notes only the following contents of Owen's 'ridiculous-looking condo': a black leather couch, a strip of faux-cowhide paneling, a futon, and an oak and 48 C o n t i n u u m Contemporaries teak armoire. Later, in "The Best City for Business", he tells us this: "New Venetian blinds, the cowhide paneling is gone; however, the furniture, the mural, the glass coffee table, Thonet chairs, black leather couch, all seem intact..
A blind man chews, feeds, on a pretzel. Two drunks, faggots, console each other on a bench. Nearby a mother breast-feeds her baby, which awakens something awful in me. (p. 297) The rest of the human race is sorted into types or species—drug dealers, niggers, faggots, drunks, blind men and mothers—all of which are dismissed as soon as they are named. The critical point of this episode is that the human 'zoo' into which Bateman's gentrifying lens converts the Central Park Zoo, is ringed in by the comforting "tips of skyscrapers, apartment buildings on Fifth Avenue, the Trump Plaza, the AT&T building", which surround the park.
Meanwhile, Patrick is concerned that "the goddamn water-soluble spermicidal lubricant" is not being used. Once everything is in order, they can get back to business. "Roughly I push my cock back into her and bring myself to an orgasm so weak as to be almost nonexistent" (pp. 103-105; stresses in original). Consumer goods intervene between human agents to the point that they displace anything resembling feeling; pleasure is knowing you're using the right lubricant. The obvious comedy is laced with the most despairing social vision.